Backed by the technological revolution, the online betting industry has been one of the fastest growing business sectors in recent years on a global scale. According to data from the platform, it has more than doubled in the past four years, reaching 176 million worldwide in 2023.

The market size of the global online casino and sports betting industry has reached $263.3 billion, and according to forecasts published by Statista, it will continue to grow at an average annual rate of 9.1% until 2027.

What accounts for this dynamic?

We can find an answer to this question in the explosive development of one of the leaders in the industry - Flutter Entertainment. In Bulgaria, the company has an office representing the Flutter International division at 56A Tsarigradsko Shose Blvd., as well as a presence through the PokerStars and Cayetano brands.

The foundations of the company were laid in 2015, when two of the leaders of the British market - Paddy Power and Betfair - entered into a merger agreement. In May 2018, the now merged Paddy Power Betfair announced the acquisition of FanDuel, one of the two leading fantasy sports operators in the US, and a year later it entered Georgia, buying a 51% controlling stake in adjarabet. 

In early 2019, the company announced that it would rebrand as Flutter Entertainment, a move followed by several more acquisitions, including Canadian betting operator The Stars Group and leading Italian online gaming provider Sisal Gaming.

And that is far from all.

Flutter sets foot in the Balkans

In 2023, the world's largest global online sports betting and iGaming company - Flutter - officially set foot in the Balkans, acquiring a 51% controlling stake in MaxBet - the number 2 sports betting platform in Serbia with approximately 20% share of the local market and 95 thousand average monthly online players.

"This acquisition continues our progress on the strategic priorities we have set for our international division: to buy and build leading positions in regulated markets. We believe that MaxBet is an excellent opportunity to repeat the success we have achieved in markets such as Georgia, India and Italy," said Peter Jackson, CEO of Flutter Entertainment, when the deal was announced.

In this way, the company combines its global experience and technological know-how with local expertise and is heading for the leading position in an attractive market that in 2022 will generate 700 million euros and is expected to grow by around 15% by 2025. annually.

"It is my great honor and pleasure to be able to welcome all MaxBet team members to the Flutter International family. Together, we are ready to take the player experience to a higher level by combining MaxBet's local experience with our capacity and technology and thus enable the platform to become number 1 in Serbia and achieve exceptional success in the markets of Bosnia and Herzegovina , Montenegro and North Macedonia. For us, the game is just beginning and full of winning moves and opportunities for growth,” commented Daniel Taylor, CEO of Flutter International.

As part of the deal, MaxBet will benefit from Flutter's strategic differentiator - Flutter Edge. It is the process by which talent, technology, product and capital are shared across a global portfolio of leading brands. This helps achieve tangible revenue synergies through improved customer acquisition and retention and a shared pricing and risk management system.  

Peter Jackson, CEO of Flutter Entertainment, with NFL legend Rob Gronkowski

From London to New York

Geographical expansion is far from being limited to new gaming markets. As a public company, Flutter Entertainment until recently had a primary listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and a secondary listing on Euronext Dublin.

That changed on January 29 when Flutter Entertainment debuted on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), shutting down its secondary Euronext Dublin in favor of an additional listing on the flagship US exchange.

To get to this launch, the company, which reported over 121.321 million average monthly players in the third quarter of fiscal 2023, is going through various stages.

The first reports of its intentions to go NYSE appeared almost a year ago, and the main reason for this decision comes from the fact that Flutter's largest user base is in the US. Within this period, the company is researching US investors and markets, as well as seeking the opinion of existing shareholders on the new listing.

Research shows support for this historic decision, and Peter Jackson is emphatic:

"Our New York listing is a key moment for the group as we make Flutter more accessible to US-based investors and gain access to deeper capital markets."

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